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From hoopla to ensuing calamity

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Compliments to Lucas Doney, age 12, on his Jan. 31 letter on marijuana "Enforcement costs will go up." His commentary was excellent. I, too, am concerned with legalizing marijuana usage by adults in Washington state, even though a federal law exists, "prohibiting marijuana usage or possession." Really!
To initiate Initiative 502, flies in the face of existing federal law. Really!
The Washington state liquor control board, tasked with establishing rules on growing marijuana, its production, quantity, storage, licensing and sales, etc., a feeding-fish-frenzy over a federally prohibited drug. Some have called marijuana a "recreational drug." Really! Perhaps the state/national park department should also be involved.
Marijuana is an "entrance drug" to more potent drugs. A study in the Cleveland area by a group of MDs and PhDs, several years ago, compared the brain cells of a group of tobacco smokers with the brain cells of a group of marijuana smokers. The study found that smoking marijuana caused far greater damage to brain cells than smoking tobacco.
With the passage of I-502, folks who would never think of going down back alleys, or into seedy neighborhoods to obtain marijuana will now have easy access to the drug. Many will try it, some won't like it, others will succumb to the drug's effects. And, there will be young folks involved.
The Oct. 12 Viewpoints commentary by Bill Dickinson, "Marijuana is too risky for legalization, on the dire consequences on teenagers brains by smoking marijuana is an excellent article. Read it prior to trying marijuana. Dr. Dickinson is an addiction medicine physician in Everett.
The reason I-502 passed by 52 percent is the tremendous hoopla by our former governor, various prosecuting attorneys, lawyers and those already "involved" with marijuana. The voters were deceived by their hoopla. I should say 52 percent of the voters, for 48 percent recognized the ensuing calamity.
Have you experienced an oncoming motorist in your lane? Due to inattention, under the influence of alcohol, or hard drugs, after December, 2013, when the state begins hawking their new cash crop, look out for an increase in errant drivers when the "stoners" show up.
Thank the supporters of I-502 for the dilemma. All supposedly for an increase in state tax income. Really!
And who in the hell am I? Just an old, nearly 90, retired Master Chief Hospital Corpsman who still cares about his fellow Americans. Really!
William Pepperell

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